Committed to restoring statehood: PM Narendra Modi tells J&K leaders after all-party meet

New Delhi: The high-profile all-party meeting called by Prime Minister Narendra Modi with political leaders from Jammu and Kashmir concluded at Prime Minister’s official residence in New Delhi on Thursday evening. The meeting began at around 3 pm and lasted for almost five hours. It was attended by 14 prominent leaders from the Union Territory. 

This was the first high-level interaction between the Centre and political leadership mainly from Kashmir since August 5, 2019, when the Centre revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and the state was bifurcated into two union territories. The meeting lasted for almost 5 hours. 

Among the leaders who are participated in the meeting were Congress’ Ghulam Nabi Azad, Tara Chand and GA Mir, National Conference’s Dr Farooq Abdullah and Omar Abdullah, PDP’s Mehbooba Mufti, J-K Apni Party’s Altaf Bukhari, BJP’s Ravinder Raina, Nirmal Singh, and Kavinder Gupta, CPI(M)’s M Y Tarigami, National Panthers Party’s Prof Bheem Singh; and Peoples Conference’s Sajad Gani Lone.

Home Minister Amit Shah, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval, Jammu and Kashmir Lt Governor Manoj Sinha and Home Secretary also attended the meeting.

Jammu and Kashmir Apni Party’s Altaf Bukhari said on PM Modi-J&K leaders meet, “The talks were held in a good atmosphere today. The Prime Minister heard our issues of all leaders. PM said that election process will begin when delimitation process finishes. The PM asked all to participate in the delimitation process. We have been assured that this is the roadmap towards elections. PM also said that we are committed to the restoration of statehood.”

“PM Narendra Modi heard out suggestions and inputs from all participants. He expressed happiness that all participants shared their honest views. It was an open discussion that revolved around building a better future for Kashmir, an ANI source said. 

“The meeting was held in a very cordial manner. We came out quite positive that hopefully there will be some delivery for the people of Jammu and Kashmir,” said People’s Conference leader Sajjad Lone. 

Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad said, “We kept 5 demands in the meeting- grant statehood soon, conduct Assembly elections to restore democracy, rehabilitation of Kashmiri Pandits in J&K, all political detainees should be released and on domicile rules. The Home Minister said the government is committed to granting statehood to Jammu and Kashmir. All leaders demanded full-fledged statehood.”

“All leaders demanded statehood. To which PM said, the delimitation process should conclude first and then other issues will be addressed. It was a satisfactory meeting. There was complete unanimity for restoring peace in Jammu and Kashmir,” said Muzaffar Hussain Baig on PM’s J&K meet.

“All leaders of Jammu and Kashmir have been assured by PM Narendra Modi that all will work together for the future and betterment of J&K. PM Modi heard everyone and said that all steps will be taken for the development of the people of J&K,” said Ravinder Raina, J&K BJP chief.

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